Scottish Health Survey 2020

The Scottish Health Survey (SHeS) 2020 telephone survey was undertaken by ScotCen Social Research.

Due to the testing of a new methodology for SHeS within the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the survey results that inform these indicators are presented as experimental statistics.This means that the survey reported upon was in a testing phase and that users should be aware of the mode differences and potential impact on results.

In interpreting these results, please note that the usual format of the SHeS was different in several key respects:

  • The usual format of the SHeS, interviewers¬† undertake height and weight measurements. As this was not possible in the telephone survey, respondents¬†were asked to provide these measurements themselves. Other studies have shown that self-reported measurements tend to overestimate height and underestimate weight on average.¬†To help address this, adjustment factors based on a comparison study undertaken for the Health Survey for England were used to adjust the self-reported measurements. However, for women, levels of overweight including obesity tend to be higher in deprived areas where response to this survey was lower than usual (the pattern for men is less clear), hence the results may underestimate true prevalence.
  • As questions on food insecurity are potentially sensitive in nature, in the usual format of a Scottish Health Survey interview in the home, they are included in a self-completion form which the respondents complete themselves rather than the interviewer asking the questions.¬†Self-completion formats may illicit a more accurate response from some participants who feel more comfortable answering sensitive questions privately. For this reason and as levels of food insecurity are generally higher in deprived areas where response to this survey was lower than usual, the results below may underestimate true prevalence.
  • In interpreting these results, note that information on physical activity was collected using the Short-Form International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ). This questionnaire defines activity levels based on reported moderate or vigorous physical activity (MVPA) but uses a less detailed set of questions than those included in the face-to-face¬†SHeS¬†surveys and hence it is not comparable with the face-to-face survey approach. A further consideration is that, as physical activity levels tend to be lower in deprived areas where response to this survey was lower than usual, the results below may overestimate true prevalence.
  • In interpreting these results, note that, in this survey the mental wellbeing questions were asked as part of the main interview. Questions on mental health are potentially sensitive in nature, and in the usual format of a Scottish Health Survey interview in the home they are included in a self-completion form which the participants complete themselves rather than the interviewer asking the questions. Self-completion formats may illicit a more accurate response from some participants who feel more comfortable answering sensitive questions privately. For this reason and as indicators of poor mental health tend to be higher in deprived areas where response to this survey was lower than usual, the following indicator may overestimate mental wellbeing.¬†

 A full account of this can be found in the SHeS report, which can be read here.

For the purposes of the National Performance Framework, we are reporting the results here as indicative only. An assessment of performance is not being made, and we are not making comparisons with previous years as we feel it would not be appropriate to do so for the reasons outlined above.

 

 

Mental Wellbeing 2020

Wellbeing is measured using the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Wellbeing Scale (WEMWBS). This uses 14 positively worded statements to assess overall mental wellbeing, with 14 the lowest score possible and 70 the highest. For more information, see the SHeS 2020 report, or the technical note on the mental wellbeing indicator

The average¬†WEMWBS¬†score for all adults during the fieldwork period was 51.9. Mental wellbeing was significantly higher among those aged 65-74, with an average score of 54.1 recorded compared with scores in the range 51.4 ‚Äď 51.7 recorded among those aged 16-64 and 75 and over.

Performance to be confirmed

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Healthy Weight (adult) - 2020

Just over a third of adults (37%) interviewed during the fieldwork period were within the healthy weight range (BMI of 18.5 to less than 25 kg/m2), with around six in ten (62%) categorised as overweight including obesity (BMI of 25 kg/m2 and over).

Men were more likely to be overweight than women (38% and 31% respectively), however, there were no significant differences recorded by sex for the healthy weight category or the prevalence of overweight including obesity.

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Food insecurity 2020

During the fieldwork period, just under one in ten adults (8%) reported that they worried that they would run out of food at some time due to a lack of money or other resources, 4% of all adults reported having eaten less than they should and 2% that they had run out of food due to a lack of money or other resources during the previous 12 months.

No significant difference in food insecurity was observed between men and women. However, it was more prevalent among younger adults, with those aged 16-44 (11%) most likely to report having been worried they would run out of food in the previous 12 months (compared to 7% for those aged 45-64 and 1% - 2% for those aged 65 and over).

Younger adults were also more likely than others to report having eaten less over the same period because of a lack of money or other resources (4% - 7% among those aged 16-64 compared with 1% among those aged 65 and over) and to have run out of food due to a lack of money or other resources  (2% - 3% of those aged 16-64 compared with 0% among those aged 65 and over). Similar patterns by age were recorded for both men and women, with no significant variations.

Performance to be confirmed

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Physical Activity 2020

During the fieldwork period, nearly half (46%) of all adults met the guidelines for moderate or vigorous physical activity (MVPA) of at least 75 minutes per week of vigorous activity or 150 minutes per week of moderate activity (or some combination of the two).

Younger adults were more likely than older adults to meet the MVPA guidelines (50% of those aged 16-44 compared with 34% of those aged 75 and over).

A higher proportion of men met the MVPA guidelines than women (51% compared with 42% respectively) with the gap at its widest among those aged 75 and over (44% of men in this age group compared with 28% of women).

Performance to be confirmed

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